Life in an orchard by the Indus river

The Apricot Tree Hotel

The Apricot Tree Hotel

Srinagar-Leh Highway
, Jammu & Kashmir
, India

The Apricot Tree has been designed as a contemporary resort while incorporating elements of traditional Ladakhi architecture, crafts and traditions. Smart and comfortable furniture, attractive colour co-ordinates are highlighted by photographs of the region by the well-known Czech photographer Jaroslav Poncar. Contemporary art by emerging Ladakhi artists feature in the rooms and around the hotel. The pebbled central courtyard serves as the meeting point for guests to share stories after a day of exploring and hikes, sitting around a campfire with a warm drink under the famed Ladakhi night sky. The simple yet aesthetic rooms feature balconies overlooking the Indus and a short path from the hotel takes you to the banks of the river.

If you’re lucky you will spot ridaks (deer) coming to drink on the opposite bank of the river, or catch a glimpse of a golden oriole who makes her nest in the woods below. Although close to a major highway, the remote location ensures peace and quiet.

Our Rating: Mid-Range
Property Type: Wildlife/Nature Lodge


Set amidst the mighty Karakoram and the Great Himalayan ranges, Ladakh was an important trade route between Central Asia and once undivided India. Displaying stunning landscapes, its remote location and difficult access has ensured that a unique cultural community sustained and thrived. Nurla in Leh district is located at a lower altitude than Leh town, making it a good base to acclimatize when you arrive in this land of high-passes. The Apricot Tree is tucked away on the outskirts of Nurla village and is a ninety minute drive from Leh airport. Located just off the Leh-Srinagar highway and perched on a gentle slope overlooking the Indus river, the hotel is set in an orchard of apple and apricot trees, offers sounds and views of the river and crisp mountain air.


Rooms with a View : At Apricot Tree, rooms are spread over two floors and overlook the river Indus with the mountains as a constant backdrop. The rooms are spacious, simple yet hinting at Ladakh’s every day living art, each room on the first floor has a balcony while ground level room open to a sit out. The attached bathrooms come with modern amenities and comforts.


Offering seasonal produce from their organic garden, the cuisine at the river facing restaurant is essentially Ladakhi, Indian and Chinese. And if you are lucky to be at The Apricot Tree at the right time, in August, fresh apricots straight from the trees are a must-have in all forms – fresh, stewed and in desserts.


Access to Monasteries : The location of Apricot Tree makes it an ideal base to explore some of the oldest monasteries in Ladakh – Alchi, Sumdo and Mangyu, as well as the imposing Avalokiteshvara statue at Mulbeck and petroglyphs at Domkhar. Or attend the festivals at Lamayuru Monastery which usually falls in June or the one at Tserkarmo in Tingmosgang in July or August.

Hikes and Walks : Take walks around the area and hikes with local guides to nearby villages, or go birding. Treks and hikes can be organised with several routes that begin or end from this area. Weather permitting, white water rafting on the Indus is possible too.

Culture : Cultural and local music programs can also be organised at the hotel. Dancers and musicians in the area are invited to perform for the guests.

In the Orchard : For those who have time at the hotel, wander through the vegetable garden or the apricot orchard, listen to stories about the region from Wangchuk himself, enjoy picnic lunches on one of the many trails, learn about local food as well as prepare butter tea or momos. Yoga and meditation classes are available on request.

Perfect as a good starting point to discover Ladakh while you acclimatise to the altitude. The remote location also makes for a perfect getaway and serves as the first point when on the road from Srinagar.

Operational Status

The Apricot Tree is operational during summer from May to September.

Why we love this place

The Apricot Tree’s remote location allows one to slow down and take in the beautiful landscape that Ladakh is famous for. Wangchuk’s love for the region is evident all across the hotel – right from the staff to the attention to detail in the spaces within. The stories he regales you with, his knowledge of the place, .. having grown up in the area in his old family estate right across from the hotel.

About your host

Wangchuk Tsering Fargo grew up in the village of Nurla like generations before him amidst fields of barley and apricot orchards and grazing livestock. His grandfather Tsering Chospel occasionally worked as a guide to intrepid travellers to Ladakh in the early nineteenth century when Wangchuk grew up listening to fascinating stories and after Ladakh was opened up to tourists, he set up Fargo Travels in 1978. Fargo Travels continues to be one of the oldest travel companies in Ladakh with a worldwide following showcasing the culture of Ladakh to curious travellers.

Responsible/Sustainable Tourism

Ladakhi architectural practices and building materials in the hotel are a showcase of the region’s continuing traditions. The restaurant uses ingredients from the organic garden and sourced from the local farmers around. Their menu also highlights some of the best Ladakhi recipes.

Water at the hotel comes straight from a glacial stream, it’s clear and sparkling. Garbage is segregated and wet garbage is given to local cows in the area as fodder. The Apricot Tree is in the process of eliminating single use plastic.

Elderly and people with limited mobility are welcome at the hotel. The top floor of the hotel is wheel chair friendly and guests booked into a room on the upper floor – they have easy access to the restaurant and courtyard.

LAMO : The Apricot Tree is one of the few hotels in Ladakh that showcases the work of local contemporary established and emerging artists – painters, sculptors, ceramic artists, etc… their work is showcased throughout the hotel. Some of them have also been invited to create specific art works for the hotel. In this the Apricot Tree works closely with a local arts organisation, the Ladakh Arts and Media Organisation (LAMO).

Our Recommendation

Head to the terrace after dinner to behold nature's canvas, a sky full of stars and the River Indus shimmering in the moonlight.

Can’t find a suitable itinerary that features a destination, experience or accommodation you fancy? All our group tours and holiday ideas can be personalised, or we can create a tailor made itinerary for you.

Our Accommodation Ratings

Opulent: Exceptional, unashamedly the best of sheer luxury. (£££££)

Luxury: Outstanding levels of 5* comfort, hospitality and facilities. (££££)

Premium: Excellent levels of comfort and hospitality and a wide range of facilities. (£££)

Mid-Range: Good levels of comfort and hospitality, with a reasonable range of facilities. (££)

Simple: Clean and simple, no frills. Often in areas of natural beauty or near wildlife reserves. (£)